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FaceTime for Mac uses push notifications

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 
Apple has brought another iOS feature 'back to the Mac' in the form of push notification services for the beta version of FaceTime for Mac, which can notify you of an incoming video call even when the application is not running.

When the long-awaited release of Apple's FaceTime for Mac came in the form of a beta Wednesday, users were pleasantly surprised to find that they could receive calls without leaving FaceTime open.

According to apple.com/mac/facetime/, "whenever someone tries to reach you, the call rings through on every Mac you own even if FaceTime isnt runningIf you don't want to receive calls, just turn FaceTime off in Preferences."

Shortly after the application became available, German blogger Florian Schimanke noticed (Google Translation) a related background process "apsd-ft" and surmised that the process stood for "Apple Push Service Daemon - FaceTime."



Also, users attempting to uninstall FaceTime for Mac sought help on the Apple Support forums when Mac OS X refused to allow the deletion of the application because it was "in use." Signing out of FaceTime from the FaceTime menu or disabling FaceTime in the application's preferences pane halts the "apsd-ft" process and allows the FaceTime application package to be deleted.

A look inside the contents of the FaceTime.app package reveals an ApplePushService.framework folder with the apsd-ft process and relevant property list files.



Early users of the FaceTime for Mac beta reported a security issue with the program. The application initially allowed users to change their iTunes password without inputting the existing password, but the feature was quickly disabled.

Push services for Mac

This isn't the first time that Apple has brought push services to the Mac, however. In 2008, Apple replaced its .Mac service with MobileMe push internet service, allowing users to push email, calendars, contacts and more to the iPhone, iPod touch, Macs and PCs. In preparation for push services on the iPhone and Mac OS X Snow Leopard Server, Apple built its own Push Notification Server from the ground up using open standards.

With the release of iOS 3.0 in 2009, Apple made good on its 2008 promise to bring third-party push notification services to the iPhone and iPod touch. FaceTime for Mac might be an early indicator that Apple will expand the push notification options on Mac OS X next year as it brings numerous iOS features to the Mac with Mac OS X 10.7 Lion.
post #2 of 31
Are you sure MobileMe uses pns on the Mac? I have a MobileMe account and I think Mail is using some form of IMAP notification.
post #3 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

Are you sure MobileMe uses pns on the Mac? I have a MobileMe account and I think Mail is using some form of IMAP notification.

thanks for the heads up. i made some changes, should be more accurate now.
post #4 of 31
I am glad that I don't have to keep the FaceTime app running to get FaceTime calls on my Mac.
post #5 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post

I am glad that I don't have to keep the FaceTime app running to get FaceTime calls on my Mac.

Ditto.

I can see using this like an intercom in the house. Or office...
Emailing video from iPhone to Apple TV , sort of..
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Emailing video from iPhone to Apple TV , sort of..
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post #6 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

Are you sure MobileMe uses pns on the Mac? I have a MobileMe account and I think Mail is using some form of IMAP notification.

They use IMAP IDLE which is similar to push that you might as well call it push.
post #7 of 31
Brilliant...nobody sweats the details like Apple...

Just used FaceTime for the first time...My daughter is in St. Maarten with her 13" MBP and I'm here in Arizona with my iMac and my iPhone 4.

Tried both and they worked great. Better than Skype and a lot simpler.

The iPhone 4 actually was better mainly because of a better camera and the smaller screen but probably a lot is due to the Retina display....she was really wowed when I hit the button to switch to the front facing camera...

Always cool when you can impress your 26 year old daughter...

Last time I did that I think she was seven and I'm tennis player and I can hit the ball straight up about 4-5 stories and when it comes down catch it on my racquet without it bouncing. She said, "OMG, Dad!" Yep, that was the last time, I think!

Best
post #8 of 31
Too bad Apple can't get push e-mail working between Mac OS X Server systems and the iPhone!
post #9 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Too bad Apple can't get push e-mail working between Mac OS X Server systems and the iPhone!

MobileMe email push has been flawless for me. So great that I forward all my gmail (my normal email account) to my MM account so I can my email instantly.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #10 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

MobileMe email push has been flawless for me. So great that I forward all my gmail (my normal email account) to my MM account so I can my email instantly.

Sorry, MobileMe and gmail are stoppers when privacy is concerned. No corporation in their right mind would use these systems.

Mac OS X Server even has what's called Push Notification Service, and it's a complete waste of time.
post #11 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Sorry, MobileMe and gmail are stoppers when privacy is concerned. No corporation in their right mind would use these systems.

Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail and other consumer mail services are great? I trust Apple more than Google or Yahoo when it comes to protecting my personal information.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #12 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail and other consumer mail services are great? I trust Apple more than Google or Yahoo when it comes to protecting my personal information.

Apple may seem more trustworthy than the others, but I will not trust my business communications to any of them.
post #13 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Apple may seem more trustworthy than the others, but I will not trust my business communications to any of them.

Ah, when you wrote Mac OS X Server in regards to email I thought you were referring to MobileMe, not corporate email on OS X Server. They lose the Mac when not talking about their consumer products. I dont know who uses any Apple servers so I have no comment on that.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #14 of 31
Will this push notification wake a computer from sleep?

I'm not sure if I would consider this a plus or minus if it did -- on the one hand, I like the idea of being able to call a computer regardless of whether its in use (I have all my computers sleep after 5 min of unuse; I'm kind of a greenie)

But on the other hand, I don't like the idea of any processes running while the computer is in sleep mode.

thoughts?
post #15 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Apple may seem more trustworthy than the others, but I will not trust my business communications to any of them.

MobileMe is not intended for business/corporations use. It is intended for consumers. I agree with you that I wouldn't use Gmail, hotmail, nor Yahoo for business communications. Others might do it but I won't.

What I understand about Push Notification on Mac OS X Server is that the communication is encrypted between your servers and clients devices directly and nothing goes through Apple servers. If you can point me to something that says otherwise I will appreciate it since I am interested in knowing more about it.
post #16 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCarbon View Post

Will this push notification wake a computer from sleep?

I'm not sure if I would consider this a plus or minus if it did -- on the one hand, I like the idea of being able to call a computer regardless of whether its in use (I have all my computers sleep after 5 min of unuse; I'm kind of a greenie)

But on the other hand, I don't like the idea of any processes running while the computer is in sleep mode.

thoughts?

Probably will not wake the computer unless you enable "Wake on network access" from the energy save setting.
post #17 of 31
Interesting to hear all this paranoia about not using gmail etc... There must be millions of small businesses using gmail and MobileMe services these days. I am one, have done for years and never had a problem.

If your business is illegal, spying or so sensitive everything has to be encrypted 50 times, fine, then don't use anything but a private bespoke service. For the rest of it, there is no need for all the paranoia about privacy...
post #18 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post

What I understand about Push Notification [Service] on Mac OS X [Snow Leopard] Server is that the communication is encrypted between your servers and clients devices directly and nothing goes through Apple servers. If you can point me to something that says otherwise I will appreciate it since I am interested in knowing more about it.

You've described how e-mail operates, when hosted on a Mac OS X e-mail server using SSL. The Push Notification Service is supposed to push notification of messages to the client, so the iPhone doesn't have to poll the server. Without push, a new message might not be known about on the iPhone for up to 15 minutes, because 15 minutes is the minimum poll period. (Apple originally provided a minimum 5 minute poll time but later opted for conserving battery life over letting the user decide. Apple's decision also coincided with the release of Snow Leopard Server with PNS.)

The problem is PNS doesn't work. Google it.
Daniel Eran Dilger has written for AI as an apparent means of publicizing his book on Snow Leopard Server. In one chapter, he goes into detail about how to configure PNS for e-mail. This really cool video also shows how to configure it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZiYAWRGMDtk

No one has actually gotten PNS to work.
post #19 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon T View Post

there is no need for all the paranoia about privacy...

Play much Farmville?
post #20 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Play much Farmville?

Real men don't.
post #21 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

You've described how e-mail operates, when hosted on a Mac OS X e-mail server using SSL. The Push Notification Service is supposed to push notification of messages to the client, so the iPhone doesn't have to poll the server. Without push, a new message might not be known about on the iPhone for up to 15 minutes, because 15 minutes is the minimum poll period. (Apple originally provided a minimum 5 minute poll time but later opted for conserving battery life over letting the user decide. Apple's decision also coincided with the release of Snow Leopard Server with PNS.)

The problem is PNS doesn't work. Google it.
Daniel Eran Dilger has written for AI as an apparent means of publicizing his book on Snow Leopard Server. In one chapter, he goes into detail about how to configure PNS for e-mail. This really cool video also shows how to configure it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZiYAWRGMDtk

No one has actually gotten PNS to work.

Since Apple introduced this great feature Ive used it constantly. I get push notifications all the time and never wondered if an app or their PNS wasnt working correctly. And, like I stated earlier, I forward my Gmail to my MobileMe account because I can use the IMAP IDLE to get my mail pushed to my iDevices almost instantly. I cant say how fast it is, but on my Mac Mail polls the Gmail server every 1 minute and my phone will almost always vibrate before it hits my Mac.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #22 of 31
I hope it's just because of the beta-ness of the app, but it stops working unless it's in the /Applications folder. I hate the dumping ground which is the stock applications folder, and I organize it into categories (iStuff, Graphics, Communication, Utilities, etc). I know it breaks the apple update process, so I do it manually.


Sheldon
post #23 of 31
I'm loving this integration of iOS with OS X (and what Lion will bring.) It will mean an unprecedented level of usability. For instance, I'm already doing the kind of photo editing on an iPhone 4 with a 2-dollar app that was only available for a great deal more (and only for a "computer") just a few years ago.
post #24 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Since Apple introduced this great feature I’ve used it constantly. I get push notifications all the time and never wondered if an app or their PNS wasn’t working correctly. And, like I stated earlier, I forward my Gmail to my MobileMe account because I can use the IMAP IDLE to get my mail pushed to my iDevices almost instantly. I can’t say how fast it is, but on my Mac Mail polls the Gmail server every 1 minute and my phone will almost always vibrate before it hits my Mac.

The iPhone feature set is far less than you believe, and as I stated earlier, I'm not forwarding my personal or business e-mail through anyone's server just to make up for Apple's deficiencies.

You get e-mail delivered promptly to your iPhone without the standard 15-minute polling lag because you forward it to MobileMe for the supposed IMAP IDLE support of the iPhone. If IMAP IDLE really worked on the iPhone, Mac OS X Server would deliver e-mail to the iPhone without polling, but IMAP IDLE doesn't work on the iPhone. MobileMe uses a different signaling mechanism than IMAP IDLE. Mac OS X Server can not deliver push e-mail to the iPhone even though Server supports IMAP IDLE. Apple introduced the Push Notification Service to Snow Leopard Server, ostensibly to provide push e-mail to the iPhone, but PNS doesn't work either.

This AI article is full of bunk when it comes to describing what actually works. Yes, the new FaceTime app provides "push" notification on the Mac. Big deal. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to write a background listening process for a Mac. Let's see Apple get PNS working on Mac OS X Server like it's supposed to.
post #25 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by christopher126 View Post

Brilliant...nobody sweats the details like Apple...

Just used FaceTime for the first time...My daughter is in St. Maarten with her 13" MBP and I'm here in Arizona with my iMac and my iPhone 4.

Tried both and they worked great. Better than Skype and a lot simpler.

The iPhone 4 actually was better mainly because of a better camera and the smaller screen but probably a lot is due to the Retina display....she was really wowed when I hit the button to switch to the front facing camera...

Always cool when you can impress your 26 year old daughter...

Last time I did that I think she was seven and I'm tennis player and I can hit the ball straight up about 4-5 stories and when it comes down catch it on my racquet without it bouncing. She said, "OMG, Dad!" Yep, that was the last time, I think!

Best

Yes, it is cool - my brother wanted to show his old curmugeon of a boss, so he Facetimed me and introduced me to him and his coworkers. They were all very impressed, loved the camera thing.
post #26 of 31
I downloaded the facetime app. I have it going through my email address. Now my wife has Iphone 4. When we first bought her phone, ATT gave her a dumby number for the reason of switching from another carrier. After her contract was up, we ported her number to the iphone. Dumping the other number for her orignal.

So when I tried facetime by calling her phone it would not connect. I was puzzled. I tried it a few more times and still nothing. I decided to take her phone and call me and it worked. I was confused when another number showed up. After pondering this for some time, I then noticed the number was the dumby number ATT gave her. This number was dumped 2 1/2 months ago.

Now I know facetime for Mac is just a beta version, but does anyone have an idea WTF is going on here?
post #27 of 31
It is becoming increasingly likely that 3rd Party companies will look to licence the FaceTime software for the introduction of video calling on their devices. This, coupled with the undoubted introduction of video camers on an iPad 2, should ensure that FaceTime will gain further ground.

I'm looking forward to when FaceTime will work over a 3G/4G network and not just WiFI
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post #28 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

Sorry, MobileMe and gmail are stoppers when privacy is concerned. No corporation in their right mind would use these systems.

Mac OS X Server even has what's called Push Notification Service, and it's a complete waste of time.

Except of course for all the ones that do use GMail

http://www.google.com/apps/intl/en/b...customers.html

There is no reason a third party service provider can not meet or exceed the security and privacy offered by an internal IT shop. In most cases it is not even difficult.
post #29 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by kulak18 View Post

I downloaded the facetime app. I have it going through my email address. Now my wife has Iphone 4. When we first bought her phone, ATT gave her a dumby number for the reason of switching from another carrier. After her contract was up, we ported her number to the iphone. Dumping the other number for her orignal.

So when I tried facetime by calling her phone it would not connect. I was puzzled. I tried it a few more times and still nothing. I decided to take her phone and call me and it worked. I was confused when another number showed up. After pondering this for some time, I then noticed the number was the dumby number ATT gave her. This number was dumped 2 1/2 months ago.

Now I know facetime for Mac is just a beta version, but does anyone have an idea WTF is going on here?

You need to change the number of the phone in Settings > Phone > My Number. This will register the phone number set here with the FaceTime service. That way, FaceTime actually knows this phone number exists, and the phone is currently online.
post #30 of 31
Anyone know of a way to change the default layout to wide instead of tall? On a Mac I prefer the wide layout. And my primary (only) use will be calling between Macs.

- Jasen.
post #31 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post

The iPhone feature set is far less than you believe, and as I stated earlier, I'm not forwarding my personal or business e-mail through anyone's server just to make up for Apple's deficiencies.

You get e-mail delivered promptly to your iPhone without the standard 15-minute polling lag because you forward it to MobileMe for the supposed IMAP IDLE support of the iPhone. If IMAP IDLE really worked on the iPhone, Mac OS X Server would deliver e-mail to the iPhone without polling, but IMAP IDLE doesn't work on the iPhone. MobileMe uses a different signaling mechanism than IMAP IDLE. Mac OS X Server can not deliver push e-mail to the iPhone even though Server supports IMAP IDLE. Apple introduced the Push Notification Service to Snow Leopard Server, ostensibly to provide push e-mail to the iPhone, but PNS doesn't work either.

This AI article is full of bunk when it comes to describing what actually works. Yes, the new FaceTime app provides "push" notification on the Mac. Big deal. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to write a background listening process for a Mac. Let's see Apple get PNS working on Mac OS X Server like it's supposed to.

The push notification service in OS X server is a piece of junk, no doubt about that. My biggest gripe is it messes up iChat client availability if you are also using the iCal and Address Book servers. The Push Notification Service uses jabber just like iChat. However, we found that if a user has iCal open the Jabber server will show them as online even though they aren't even running iChat.

I'd have to look in the documentation, but I don't think that the Push Notification Server is designed to do anything more than provide push service on the local network for iCal and Address Book. In order to push data to phones, you have to first send the data to Apple's Push Notification Service so they can send it over the cell signal to your phone. You have to set up an SSL connection to Apple's servers to send your data over, and there are no settings or documentation on how to do this.
"Slow vehicle speeds with frequent stops would signal traffic congestion, for instance."

uh... it could also signal that my Mom is at the wheel...
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"Slow vehicle speeds with frequent stops would signal traffic congestion, for instance."

uh... it could also signal that my Mom is at the wheel...
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